“Where does it come from,
The sap of strangeness inside us…” ~ Alberto Rios

A poet once asked, can you think
of a truly original thought? I scratch

my head and ask my students the same
question, then we start making lists: rain

running in blue zigzags down a window screen,
a loose thread begging to be pulled from

a sleeve. The way you can tell two people
(who most of the time love each other)

are having a quarrel in public, by the way
they look in different directions though their

elbows still touch. Someone says volcanos have
no regard for rhetoric or syntax, as evidenced

by the way they spill their hot guts there
on the pavement, at your feet. The wind

doesn’t ring the chimes in the tree:
it’s the way a hollow body makes space

for a wave, then deflects it at a boundary.
For the umpteenth time, I’m telling you:

there’s no o in my first name. Yes,
I’m original— but not like that. A cracked

nail grows back after it’s filed or cut.
Apparently, a cat can poop in a yard

as copiously as a dog. Obviously, another
form of what’s called intertextuality.


In response to an entry from the Morning Porch.

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